The PICC and its Four Historic Artworks Have Been Declared as National Cultural Treasures

September 28, 2022



Rick Formalejo

The National Museum of the Philippines declared the Philippine International Convention Center (PICC) a National Cultural Treasure on September 27, 2022. Designed by National Artist for Architecture Leandro Locsin, the PICC is one of the most iconic architectural pieces in the country. The facility has hosted numerous local and foreign conventions, meetings, fairs, and social events. 

Apart from the complex, several works of art originally and permanently installed in the building have also been designated as National Cultural Treasures. These artworks include Anito, a sculpture by National Artist Arturo R. Luz at the Courtyard; Grid, a steel sculpture also by Arturo Luz at the Plenary Hall; Pagdiriwang, a painting by National Artist Jose T. Joya at the Delegation Upper Lobby; and Carved-wooden furniture by National Artist Napoleon V. Abueva which are distributed in various lobbies and hallways in the building. 

The unveiling of the National Cultural Treasure marker and the signing of the certificate of turnover and acceptance ceremony was in time for the PICC’s anniversary month. Inaugurated on September 5, 1976 to host the World Bank-International Monetary Fund annual meeting, the PICC pioneered the convention centers in Asia. The structure is composed of five building modules: the Delegation Building, Secretariat Building, Plenary Hall, Reception Hall and The Forum. It is characterized by its heavy use of bare concrete, striking visuals, and defined lines—considered as Locsin’s magnum opus. 

Unveiling of Marker
(L-R) National Museum of the Philippines Deputy Director-General for Museums Jorell Legaspi, National Commission for Culture and the Arts Chairman Rene Escalante, National Museum of the Philippines Director General Jeremy Barns, National Museum of the Philippines Board of Trustees Chairperson Luli Arroyo-Bernas, BSP Governor and PICC Chairman Felipe Medalla, BSP Deputy Governor and PICC Vice Chairperson Bernadette Romulo-Puyat, PICC General Manager Renato Padilla and PICC Deputy General Manager Roberto Garcia

As a National Cultural Treasure, the PICC and the four works of art are protected for their “outstanding historical, cultural, artistic and/or scientific value which is significant and important to the country and to the nation” according to the Section 3 of the Cultural Properties Preservation and Protection Act. 

Families of the National Artists
(L-R): PICC General Manager Renato Padilla, Mr Joseph Joya Baldovino and Mr Alexander Richard Joya Baldovino , nephews of National Artist for Visual Arts Jose Joya, Mr. Andy Locsin, the son of National Artist for Architecture Leandro Locsin, BSP Governor and PICC Chairman Felipe Medalla, Ms Luisa Luz Lansigan and Mr Patrick Lansigan, daughter and son in law of National Artist for Visual Arts Arturo Luz, Ms Amihan Abueva, daughter of National Artist for Sculpture Napoleon Abueva

The PICC and the artworks joined other prestigious National Cultural Treasures, such as the iconic architectural masterpieces Metropolitan Theater and San Sebastian Church, paintings by Juan Luna and Carlos “Botong” Francisco, among others.

Photos Courtesy of The PICC

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